Andrea Powis, Founder of Travelling Divas (Australia)

Hi there, I'm Andrea Powis: passionate traveller, wife, and everything in between. My divine grandchildren, creative writing, food, shopping and fitness are my other great passions in life.

I own a wonderfiul women's travel company called Travelling Divas, which absorbs most of my waking hours when I'm not dedicated to any of the above! The idea was born when I was divorced and I found a means, opportunity and motive to escape - sounds like a crime novel! - but didn't really have anyone in the same position as me to do it with. So Travelling Divas became a reality, and I get to take fabulous women around the world with me all the time.

The travel bug bit me when I was 20 and walking through the streets of Rome, near the Piazza di Spagna. I was working for Thomas Cook Travel and was on a travel agents' educational in Europe for the first time in my life. Never had I seen anything more awe inspiring and beautiful than the city of Rome and the history that surrounded me. I had never eaten such wonderful food nor seen such handsome men! It was love at first sight and I never looked back.

There are 2 parts of the world that makes me melt inside. Tuscany, particularly the little village of Montichiello, makes my heart go zing. The village is so typically Italian. I love the 'Nonna" that owns the little linen store, where I manage to spend a fortune each and every time - bliss!

The second place is Southwest England. I have had a love affair with this part of the country for the past 15 years. There is always something new, and the history and beauty of the countryside takes my breath away. The village life is so quintessentially English, I can't stay away from it. I also think that family ties from generations past always lure me back. Trying to establish how my family came to be and understanding where I come from is like putting together the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle.

I like to be organized when I travel. I would love to be a little more adventurous and spontaneous - just turn up to places and 'free wheel' it - but my Taurean nature just won't allow it! The other reason is that I have a travel business to run so I need to be more organized than perhaps I would like. Part of the pleasure of travel for me is the research and the finding of those hidden gems via the internet or through my contacts - a little bit of the mystery unfolds when I reach the destination and stumble upon something magical!

During my earlier travel days, I enjoyed traveling on my own. These days I prefer travelling with my husband or girlfriends. We have so much fun together and are definitely on the same page as to what we like to see and do.

I never travel without the following:

1) Laptop - It keeps me in touch with the world.
2) Kindle - Loaded to the max!
3) Onboard Skincare - Consisting of moisturizer, cleanser, handcream, eye cream, etc. On long hauls, I like to shower at transit points so that I feel fresher when I get back on board.
4) Change of Underwear - One never knows if luggage will go astray!
5) My 'must have' basics - Black jeans, a crisp white shirt and stilettos. This outfit takes me everywhere!
6) Chocolate - Can't live without it!

Contact Andrea Powis, wherever she is in the world, by going to Travelling Divas.